Iowans Set World Record By Going and Going

JOHNSTON, Iowa–Athletes gathered on the track at Johnston High School and ran. And ran. And ran. One-hundred Iowans, mostly high school and college students, took turns running five kilometers back-to-back. That would be a distance of about 318 miles.

They started Friday, ran through the overnight and finished around 4p.m. Saturday. The runners took about 28 hours to finish, unofficially about two hours faster than the previous world record.

Here is Channel 13’s story Friday on runners talking about going for the record.

JOHNSTON, Iowa – One-hundred Iowans are running a 5-kilometer race  back-to-back over the course of the next 24-plus hours at the Johnston High School track.

The reason: to beat the world record, set currently by runners in Greensboro, North Carolina in 2012.

“It shows that Iowa’s distance running program has gotten a lot better, and I really think we’re at our peak,” said Tyson Wielind, a Johnston High School 2013 graduate and executive director of the record-smashing event. “We have athletes competing nationally, and it’s not just the top guys, we have the numbers.”

Wielind says the idea came after he and a group of “bored college guys” were looking through world records in running, and saw this one. The runners in North Carolina took about 30 hours to send 100 people each through a 5-kilometer distance. Wielind says he knew there was enough talent in the state of Iowa to beat that by at least a couple hours.

Wieland says through a Facebook group, he has spent the last six months gathering a team of 100 Iowa runners to commit to the event. With equipment donated by the Des Moines Dam to Dam race, and food and beverages donated by Hy-Vee and Panera, these runners will go from noon Friday to (hopefully) 3 p.m. Saturday. If they can do that, their time will be around 28 hours total, beating the record.

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